Ron Weisner, former manager of Paul McCartney, Madonna, and Michael Jackson, recently revealed his former plan to kidnap Jackson in his new book.
Weisner managed the pop star through his Off the Wall and Thriller fame but, even after all of the success, was fired by Jackson’s father, Joe Jackson, and was cut off from Michael’s career in the late 2000s.
But before that, in 2006, a plan was put into place by Weisner and Jackson’s sister, La Toya, to kidnap the singer and save him from his drug-addicted life.
“I’d snatch him. I’d get some people to grab him, take him to some rehab facility in the middle of nowhere,” Weisner told La Toya.
After the infamous Pepsi commercial on January 27, 1984 in which Jackson’s hair caught on fire during filming in front of a live simulated concert audience, he underwent several procedures to treat the second-degree burns which burnt his scalp, becoming addicted to pain killers in the process, and sparking concern from those around him. However, none of the efforts of friends and family seemed to have any effect on him.
“There were other people in Michael’s life who attempted interventions,” Weisner recalls, “none of whom came close to helping.”
When Jackson escaped to Bahrain, a small island country situated near the western shores of the Persian Gulf, his addiction and spending had gotten out out control. But two princes on the island continued to feed his desires, giving Jackson all the drugs and cash he needed.
It was at this point that La Toya gave Weisner the go-ahead on the kidnapping plan.
“That’s exactly what this was, a kidnapping” on “the other side of the world” that involved a plane, rehab facility, a team and “more money than I’d care to admit,” Weisner writes in his book.
But at the last minute, La Toya pulled the plug on the plan, pleading with Weisner not to go through with it.
“In retrospect, it was probably for the best … as one of my attorneys pointed out,” Weisner recalls. “There was little question that [the law] would view this as a kidnapping rather than an attempt to help a colleague.”
But, thinking back, Weisner believes that, had the plan been carried out, it could have possibly saved Michael.
Weisner visited Jackson in 2009 at the Staples Center, just days before he died.
“He hadn’t looked really healthy for a good long while,” Weisner wrote, “but this was a whole other level. I thought, ‘He looks like a (expletive) prisoner of war …’ He had that look in his eyes … a look of resignation, a look that said, ‘It’s over,’ and it broke my heart.”
Weisner’s new book, “Listen Out Loud,” will be available on June 3.
Image via Wikimedia Commons